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  • Membrane-based desalination process treats steamflooding produced water


    Charles Webb, Lnsp Nagghappan, Gerald Smart, John Hoblitzell, and Rich Franks

    San Ardo Field in California produces heavy oil via steamflooding. The process typically results in the production of 10 or more barrels of water for every barrel of oil recovered. Historically, a portion of this water has been recycled and softened to provide water for steam generation, with the remainder going to local EPA class II injection wells for disposal. However, the injection zone capacity is limited, which has constrained full field development. In October 2007, a desalination facility was commissioned to allow a portion of the produced water to be treated and discharged to the shallow freshwater aquifer, thereby allowing field development to progress.

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